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Several hospitalized after chemical leak causes evacuations at agricultural facility in Belle Glade

By Danielle Scruggs

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    BELLE GLADE, Florida (WPBF) — Neighborhoods are no longer being evacuated and schools are no longer on lockdown after Palm Beach County Fire Rescue responded to a major chemical leak at an agricultural facility Wednesday morning in Belle Glade.

It happened around 8 a.m. in the 200 block of NW Avenue L at the Pioneer Growers facility, where a large plume of gas could be seen.

PBFR officials confirm the leak came from machinery on site. The gas in question was chlorine dioxide that was being used as a water purifying agent.

As a precautionary measure, Belle Glade Elementary School, Glades Day School and Lake Shore Middle School were placed on lockdown during the investigation.

Teachers and students are safe and have resumed normal activities.

Nine people, some who complained of mild discomfort, were taken to a local hospital. A staging area is available for those who want to be evaluated.

The chlorine dioxide leak has been contained and officials do not have any concerns for the general public at this time.

State officials tell WPBF 25 News there was no impact to local waterways or storm drains due to the gas leak.

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